DAVID LALLY: Welcome toThe Brian Buffini Show” where we explore the mindsets, motivation and methodologies of success. My name is David Lally. I’m the producer of the show. I know we may be in challenging times, but that’s just why we’ve been working on shows to keep us upbeat and focused on the good stuff. Let’s listen in.

BRIAN BUFFINI: Well, the top of the morning to you and welcome to “The Brian Buffini Show.” One of the amazing parts of this COVID-19 situation is I’ve had a chance to talk and reconnect with people that I haven’t talked to in a long time. I don’t know if you guys have had that same experience. Today is no different, and I’ve got a great honor of having David Stevens on the phone with us today.

Now, Dave and I know each other over more than 20 years. David was the chief operating officer at Long & Foster, a great real estate company. Dave went on to do great things. He became the Assistant Secretary for Housing and Urban Development. We had Ben Carson on a couple of weeks ago. Well, here we have Dave Stevens who was over that as well as FHA and then as the commissioner.

Then for the last number of years, Dave, you’ve been the president and CEO Emeritus now of the Mortgage Bankers Association, and we really want to dive into this because there’s so much misinformation about mortgages today. We wanted to do it for our real estate community and then also for the hundreds of thousands of people we have listening in who just own a house and want to know what the future holds. Dave, it’s great to reconnect with you today and thanks for coming on “The Brian Buffini Show.”

DAVID STEVENS: Same here, Brian. It’s great to be with you again.

BUFFINI: We’re going to dive in just talk about this. Like you say, there’s so much misinformation. It seems like there’s misinformation but everything right now. Everybody’s got to take on things and it’s just hard to know what’s up. Let’s just dive in. You’ve been an integral player. You still play a significant role in the real estate business and your consulting company and helping up major organizations and banks working on the real estate side.

I’d love for you to give an overview yourself of what you’re seeing in the market. We’re five weeks being nationally shut in here. What’s your overall take of the real estate market at this time?

STEVENS: I think it’s really important, especially those in the real estate community because all of you are the people who talk to families and Americans across the country and communities are worried about what’s going on. What this means for the future. What’s going to happen to the economy and what’s going to happen to real estate. I think it’s really important for us to realize the difference of this period versus the great recession that began in 2008 of periodic dips we had over our decades, at least in my decades in the business.

Just to put it in perspective, Brian, the last recession was built on a credit collapse in the housing system. It took down not just the United States economy but global economies and that was based on just far too loose a credit system with subprime and NegAmloans and all of these things which are now illegal today, and actually demographics were terrible. We were actually losing household formation in owner-occupied housing for several years in a row back in 2007, ’08, ’09, and ’10. We just created this bubble that popped.

That was a credit collapse that caused the recession. This is a very different scenario. We were having one of the strongest economies in the nation. We were set to have a booming housing market and as you know, the biggest concern across the country was inventory. There just wasn’t enough portable, available inventory. Here we are. Just to wrap up this first question, we’re in the peak eye of a storm that just hit us like a ton of bricks in a very short timeframe.

We had really no lead in, I was on an airplane flying to LA five weeks ago to visit my daughter and here we are now. I came back, my wife and I couldn’t believe we actually took the flight. Restaurants were full and everything else, four days later, we’re locked up. We’re going to have a sharp decline in GDP this quarter. This is second quarter of 2020. That’s April, May and June, but we’re going to be going back to work and I’m not parroting what the President is saying.

I’m just saying for the nation, governors across the country are going to start having us go back to work sometime in June at the latest, May in some States. All this downward trend is going to stop in its tracks. We’re going to see an immediate pop back. It won’t be back to where it was, but we’re going to see immediate pop back. Mark Zandi, the economist at Moody’s predicts that we’re going to see a 18% decline in GDP this quarter, but an 11% increase in Q3 and then we’ll stumble along. This nation, we have great demographics for housing.

We’re going to have record low interest rates when we come out of this and yes, there is going to be real job loss or slow to return to jobs but retail in America is going to have a national Black Friday that’s going to go on for quite some time. We’re seeing that already in China, which is about three weeks ahead of us and they’re seeing — like Air Maze has shown 180% increase in sales month over month in China.

A lot of people are watching what’s going on in other nations that are ahead of the curve and we’re going to see that here. Restaurants will open. They won’t be as full, but then they’re going to have to hire staff. Landscapers are going to go back to work. People are going to go back to start building homes, again. Et cetera, et cetera.

This is a terrible event. This pandemic has shaken all of us from worried about families and friends and watching these numbers of people get ill and the poor victims every day. We are literally in the eye of the storm and we’re going to be coming out of this. I think it’s very important, especially for the real estate community who’s on the street talking to families just to avoid the emotional panic because there’s plenty of folks analyzing data and looking at the markets.

Virtually all the economists that I’ve been speaking to and I’ve had conversations with multiple numbers of them over the last couple of weeks, all are looking at the strong economy that had us when we walked into this thing just a few short weeks ago. That’s going to help be a wind in our back to help the American economy recover quicker than any global economy. That’s for sure.

BUFFINI: Well, we always in the Irish blessings, like the wind at our back, right? That’s what we want. We want to get back to that as quickly as we can. It’s only 50 days ago, record unemployment, record number of new jobs for February, highest real estate sales in 13 years in a month, February. It seems like it was 10 years ago because what I’ve been likening this to is not like a recession or depression. This is like a car crash at NASCAR or Formula One. Everybody’s piled up together. It’s crashing.

What we’ve been helping our Members with is we’re getting them into a mode right now, just like following a NASCAR crash is the rolling start. You’re getting behind the pace car, you take your positions, you warm up the tires, you get the engine running, you have to get the feel of the car again. Then, you go around the lapse maybe once or twice, and then the pace car pulls away. Then here we go. I’m curious to hear what you think about this. My gut is real estate was kind of last in. It seems like we’re going to be first out. It seems like there’s a heck of a lot of pent up demand. What do you think about that?

STEVENS: Yes, that’s the message I’m looking at. We’re not even going to see, if there are any house price downturns during this period. It’s going to be very minor and that’s because we just didn’t have the inventory. In fact, the only soft points might be in some of the higher-end communities that were already slow. Greenwich, Connecticut, I use that as a classic example of where for sale signs were hanging in front of homes for a long time.

The McMansions, but we have peak demographics. We have 1.2 to 1.5 households being formed annually right now where we were losing owner — We were losing household formation back during the last recession. Those demographics haven’t shifted. I’ll just give you the example. In 2009 when we were losing owner-occupied households in this country, my household was a household of six. All my kids were living with me.

They were millennials either still in college or not quite fully employed living in my basement and today, that same family is five households. My four kids each have their own places. My oldest is on her second home purchase and we have a home. That’s the demographics of the millennial generation which is going to drive us out of here.

To your point, yes, I think the pace car analogy is a good one is that this is a great time to do business if you can do it, and as you know, some States have rules in place that won’t even allow home inspections or anything physically to be done in terms of purchasing homes, sets a limitation. When we come out of this, we’re going to have — as to your point, we are going to be one of the first starters.

We’re going to have record low-interest rates. Instead of multiple offers on a home, there might be a couple less but there’s still not enough inventory to get the employed marketplace housed even when we come out of this. Whatever inventory at the entry level or the first move-up level is going to go very fast. I think this is going to be one of the first industries to recover.

BUFFINI: That’s great. Well, no question about it. I’m in the middle of a real estate deal on a commercial side. I’m the seller and we’re in mid escrow and the buyer came back and said, “Hey, I want to readjust the terms and COVID-19 and this and that,” and I go, “Dude, the stock market went down 30%, real estate values didn’t. Go ahead and buy the property if you want, but I’m not negotiating. We’re selling this building to you or I’m hanging onto it either way.”

Amazing enough, a couple of days later he got religion and went through and closed the deal. Obviously, there’s a lot of hype. I love Zandi, he’s very, very solid and I do think, obviously, some first-time buyers are going to be impacted. Obviously, some of that 22 million people that filed unemployment, some of their jobs are going to come back immediately, some are going to come back over time and we know some are not going to come back for a while.

Industries like retail are going to take their time to come back online and reanalyze this and some people use it as an opportunity to reorganize their business. The Cheesecake Factory a week into this said, “We’re not paying anybody rent.” It was a chance for them to reorganize their business and only focus on their profitable stores. We know some of that’s coming on. Here’s an interesting part, and again, I’ll ask you to put your former Mortgage Bankers Association hat on. I know you’re still very involved there.

We’re starting to see, as is typical when there’s a downturn in the market, we’re starting to see some tightening of minimum requirements to qualify for a mortgage. JP Morgan just came out with guidance that said, “Hey, 700 plus credit score, 20% down.” Now, we know that’s not everybody and the banks are trying to have a greater storehouse cash. How do you see this all playing out for, first of all, the big organizations and then the smaller independents who seem to be able to move a little more quickly?

STEVENS: I think the fast pace that got us into this period in time where again, as I said, we’re in the center of the storm right now. At the pace it’s moving, credit contracted extremely quickly and it contracted for a lot of reasons that are difficult to explain in this short period of time.

This forbearance program that was part of the CARES Act that allows anyone who has a government-guaranteed loan to opt to stop making their payments, by the way, whether they can or they can’t, they all have that option. It’s just a gentle reminder that you have to pay it back. In some cases, it may be a big balloon. Nevertheless, that’s put an enormous strain on housing finance system. Creditors like JP Morgan and others have put overlays in place until they figure out what’s going to happen here.

How many American borrowers who have mortgages today are going to go into forbearance? How many are going to ultimately default? What’s that default rate going to mean? That’s not uncommon in a period of uncertainty like we’re in. To your point, JP Morgan has been the most extreme at this point. They put a 700 minimum FICO in, 80 LTV, no cash-out refinances and if you’re self-employed, you got to show 12 months of reserves before you can get a loan.

Other loans been affected as well though, bond financing that’s sent by housing finance agencies which is so important to first time home buyers, particularly minority first time home buyers, that’s really dried up. Most lenders and mortgage servicers don’t want to take the risk of default or forbearance, so they’re going to hold back on those. Jumbo lending loan amounts over Freddie and Fannie’s top limit, have really dried up, slowed up and there’s only limited sources for that.

Obviously anything that’s considered non-QM, I think your audience knows what that means, but that are outside the box of the QM safe harbor rule that was beginning to come out into the market. That’s completely gone. We’re going to see a contraction here. I believe when we go back to work and we understand what the employment numbers look like, and as they grow quarter after quarter, you’re going to see these products come back and credit return.

We all need to recognize just to become in this period. It hit us so quickly unlike any other recession any of us who’ve ever been through, and we’re going to see movement coming out of it that’s going to be quicker than you think. We still need to understand what’s going to be the credit performance of Americans in the United States. Once people are aware of that then you’ll see banks and non-banks and credit unions et cetera beginning to readjust their credit parameters back.

By the way, one thing Brian that I think everybody’s aware of it’s moving so quickly right now, the different lenders have different scores. It might be 640 or 680 or 700 depending on the product. The terms will be different. Cash-out refinancing I think is going to continue to be a little tough, not that that necessarily matters to this audience, but it’s just a sign that the credit contraction is sudden.

It’s due to the volatility of what’s happening right now. As soon as we can get a better handle on how to evaluate performance and what we in the credit markets call duration, and cumulative default rates and severity rates and things of this sort that we care about, then you’ll see credit extend back. I view this as a moment in time, but for good quality straight A vanilla borrowers, which is actually the majority of the marketplace.

I just want to remind everybody the average credit score is 700 in a GSE. We’re going to see plenty of financing available for that community. It’s just for those that can’t qualify, don’t let them get discouraged. If they could have qualified a month ago, just have them hang in there. They’re going to get a loan and they’re going to be able to buy a home. It just may be a little time here, maybe fourth quarter, maybe first quarter next year, something in that timeframe range.

BUFFINI: You bet. I actually just interviewed Michael DeVito with Wells Fargo and he was sharing both aspects of this. One he said they’ve already helped 1.3 million customers working out a payment plan for their mortgages. On the other side, he said in the last 30 days they’ve received 64,000 apps for mortgage. People are refinancing in record scales. They’re doing drive-by appraisals. Now, they’re being a little dodgy on lower loan to value. I think that’s where you get into the issues of appraisers don’t want to go on the house, all that good stuff. My wife always says this too shall pass.

I think most people are in pretty good shape and then this too shall pass for everybody else. Banks have to tighten up. They will loosen up because they need to make loans, they need to make money and there’s going to be a lot of their competitors doing it, and so the market will drive the rest of it. You think about it in terms of this big picture. We have this car crash type scenario. We’re going to fire back up.

There’s different negotiations on who, what, when, and where opens up but let me ask you this. If you were helping a client right now, if you were in the real estate business, you were obviously over at Long & Foster, one of the, if not the largest independent company in the country at one time. What advice would you be giving to an agent on how to serve their customers at a time like this? What advice would you have them give their customers so they can navigate this?

STEVENS: Well, there’s a few things. I get asked this question I always chuckle because Brian, I’ve been a mortgage guy my whole life. I came to Long & Foster and Wes ended up making me president of the entire company. I benefit by having two brothers-in-law who are in the business. One’s in RE/MAX in Denver and several of the family members who are in the business. Here’s what I am hearing from some top agents who are talking to me, how they’re looking at the market and I agree with them.

First, if you’ve got a buyer who was wanting to buy and they can’t go look at homes now or maybe they even have some trepidation about what may happen here, the message is simple. If you go back into the market, especially if you’re an entry level, first-time hire buyer or move-up buyer where there was a real shortage of inventory, when this is over and you’re back to work or you’re employed now, get out and buy the home because you’re going to have record low rates and you won’t have to worry about as much as for being kicked out of a multiple offer.

Which we were seeing in a lot of the key metropolitan markets across the country, was that people were losing contracts. They’d put in offers and then have their hearts broken and then have to settle for the house they didn’t like as much perhaps, so, get out and buy. That’s us number one. I feel a little the same way about those who are going to list. If you really want to get your home sold, there’s going to be an immediate reaction.

There’s an economist and an advisor out of New York, Ivy Zelman, I don’t know if you’ve ever spoken to her Brian. Ivy, I was on a thing with her last week with a whole bunch of Wall Street folks and she had some really great analytics. One of them is that cabin fever amongst millennials who are still renting is now at an all-time peak. They did a survey of renters in New York City and a few other metropolitan markets. What they found was many of these folks who have been living in a 700-square foot box now for 30-plus days or if you’re in New York, it’s close to six weeks, I guess, at this point.

They’re all like saying, “As soon as I can, I’m getting out of here and I’m going to buy a house and get something with rum because I never want to be locked in a place like this again.” This actually may kickstart a little faster pace of millennial renters moving to homeownership. As you know, the way the data was showing from the New York Federal Reserve which tracks this is the percentage — They do a look at the percentage of 30-year-olds that have a mortgage and it’s about 10% lower now than it has been over the previous decades.

That’s because millennials, while they want to buy, they’ve been delaying their buying decision. If you kickstart, if you move that dial up a bit, the pressure to get out and go buy a home with all these millennial renters, you may actually see a quick pop in demand just simply from all those folks who are employed. My son in law is a contractor in Washington, DC and the contractor has a contract with the federal government, but if they can’t go to work, they don’t get paid.

There’s going to be a huge ton of folks who immediately go right back to work and started earning a paycheck. I think both listing and purchase buyers, we’re going to see some short immediate response because pent up demand is occurring and the only overlay that will cause resistance there will be the unemployment factor. Brian, I just give you this one perspective. Retail employees generally at the entry level are not homeowners.

You need to think about if you’re a real estate agent, the home-buying public is going to have a higher employment rate in general and our reemployment rate if they’ve been furloughed. That’s the market you need to look at. If you work in a community where you are seeing multiple offers on a property, okay, if it’s three, four or five offers on a property, maybe a couple of those folks aren’t coming back in the market looking for a home but doesn’t mean you’re not going to have an offer or two offers.

There’s just not enough inventory, period, to support this demographic. I think you got to be ready on both sides to get to market quickly. I wouldn’t be delaying. As you know, we play this game with real estate all the time during slow seasons or when we’ve been in slow markets, but I think testing the market has promise coming right out of this sometime in either third or fourth quarter.

BUFFINI: For sure. Obviously, we know a couple things. One, there’s plenty of sanitary ways to do this nowadays. Some real estate practices are going to change. Look, if you’d have told me in August of 2001 that for the rest of my flying career I’d be taking my shoes off as I went through a metal detector, no way would I believe that possible. Now, today, it’s just common practice.

Personal hygiene, the hygiene of the showing. I’ve been able to leave a home with a professional commercial cleaning and all of those things. Showing a house with the booties for the shoes and the gloves and a mask or using hand sanitizer, opening up the cabinets and so on and so forth. We have people doing business right now where the agent goes over and does a FaceTime walkthrough with the buyer and the buyer is actually walking through and open this closet and doing this and they’re writing the offer subject to a physical inspection prior to closing.

There’s got to be some changes and things that go on, but at the end of the day, people are buying and I do think it’s a car wreck, they’re going to get it sorted out and that’s why we’re doing this rolling start to get the engines moving to get people focused. People think they’re active, but you really just slip into these less than high-performance patterns during a time like this. I give you an example is– Go ahead.

STEVENS: Well, again, let’s just keep reminding ourselves that the demographic that’s in the home-buying population, not the rental population, the home-buying population is going to have a higher probability of reemployment or is likely still employed today. You got to separate the business you guys all do from what’s happening with this overall employment poll that’s covering the entire market.

To your point, the stock market is remarkably strong and I hate to say it its optimism pops every time there’s even a hint of returning to work. There hasn’t been a massive wealth erosion like we saw in 2007, ’08, ’09. The demographic that’s going to return to work immediately is going to have a higher propensity to have the income factors that are good for home buying, so you’re going to still walk back to the same problems you had before. The only difference is I believe rates will be lower. That’s the one advantage.

BUFFINI: Which is phenomenal. How much better can you get it? It’s great stuff and I just appreciate you’re not just being optimistic, it’s grounded in data. It’s grounded in these absolutely rock star economists. The truth of the matter is we were hauling hiney when we got into this. The bottom line is all economics is supply and demand. We still have a limited supply, high demand. Like you said, we have people getting 50 offers on a home in February, they might get three or four now/

I’ve got a grandson being born in two weeks, guess what? Babies are still being born, which means that condo’s too small and they need a house. Those are things going to change. People’s job transfers still coming through. I also think this, people have been bouncing around their house for the last five, six weeks and we know this, the demographic has already shown, the data’s in, 35% of people plan on a home improvement project in the next 60 days.

A significant number of people who have been putting off a move are now going, “I should have done it. I should’ve done it. I was leaving Connecticut and going to Texas. I was going from New York. I’m going to Florida, I’m going to do it now.” We have a little joke at the company we used to teach a buyer’s dialogue could just, “Is this a home you could see yourself living in?”, and now, “Is this the home you could see yourself being quarantined in?” This is the new script.

STEVENS: Exactly. That’s the exact analogy. If you’re a young agent and you really don’t have a big clientele yet, go work the renters in the apartment buildings and use, “Don’t ever get stuck in 700 square feet again, you could own.” I hate to say it, homeownership is a wealth creator for this country and for Americans. If you can help people figure out how to get the opportunity. I know we’re near the end here, but Fannie Mae does an annual consumer sentiment survey.

You’ve probably seen some of it before, Brian, but a lot of people have said that millennials, and that’s the core. That’s the core generation. We need to look at because the best cohorts right now age bracket-wise for buying are now in their 30s. Unlike a decade ago when they were living in basements and still in college, they’re now out looking for homes and a ton more behind them coming.

Fannie Mae’s homebuyer sentiment survey, surveys millennials and well North of 90% want to own a home. You got desire, you got great interest rates. We have opportunity, and I believe when we’re back everybody’s going to be complaining once again that we don’t have enough inventory. Remember, while we’ve been all sitting at home so are the builders, homes aren’t being built. We haven’t been building inventory here for anybody. We’re going to have that same problem. I just think it’s great for housing right now as we look forward.

BUFFINI: Beautiful stuff, optimistic stuff and right on stuff as I expected. Great news for our folks listening in today. Dave, I’ve had a tradition in the past. I’ve gotten away from the last few weeks with all the emergency podcasts we’ve been doing. I want to do this and let folks get a little inside the mind in the world of Dave Stevens. I’ve got five questions I’ve asked every major potentate we’ve had on the last four years of the show. Here’s the first one, Dave. What’s the single best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

STEVENS: I hate to say it, worry the most when things are best. That was the CEO of my first bank and we had some amazing years and he just say always be prepared for what may happen if something changes. That allows you to move on a dime when it does because you’re thinking about what would I do if.

BUFFINI: Well, no doubt. Buffini & Company put nine months of our reserves away for our expenses when things were flying high. I would always have these arguments, my bankers would go, “Well, you should be investing that money,” and I go, “I am. I’m investing it the next time there’s a bang.” We’ve been able to keep 240 people fully employed, all working from home during the middle of this thing. That’s great. Great piece of advice. Worry the most when things are the best. That’s brilliant. Next. What one talent or gift do you wish you possess that you currently don’t?

STEVENS: I did a lot of Spanish in high school and people tell me I can speak really well when we’re traveling but everybody knows how to order a cerveza. I wish I had stayed with Spanish all through college. Honestly, one of the values of being locked away is I’ve been going through Duolingo and I’m cruising through it. I’m taking this time to do what I wish I had learned back then.

BUFFINI: That’s awesome. I’ve developed an interest in Spanish because I’ve been watching episodes of “Narcos.” Tranquilo is my new word. I say to the kids all the time, tranquilo, tranquilos. It’s good stuff. Great. What book has been most instrumental to you? What book do you read? It’s just like this was a game-changer for you.

STEVENS: I’m 60 plus years old. I’ve read all the management books. I used to always say there’s a book called “Execution” which was New York Times bestseller which was my favorite but you know what I’m so wrapped up in right now, and almost just about to finish is “Hamilton.” It’s an enthralling book.

It’s so many parallels to today’s society and how the constitutional convention made decisions, how we ended up with the House and the Senate, the challenges and dynamic tensions about rulers, and how you wanted to control against kings taking — Anyway, I compare a lot to the political environment today to what they went through then. They almost didn’t form a nation and it’s an incredible story if you can hang in there. It’s a long one but it’s a good one.

BUFFINI: Sure. Well, and obviously being right there as the assistant secretary for Housing you’ve probably got the front row seat to seeing all the battles play themselves out right in front of your eyes so remarkable stuff.

STEVENS: As you know, I took my political science degree from the University of Colorado which is worth about 2 cents in the business world. Then I took my three decades of being an executive vice president at Wells and running Long & Foster and senior vice president at Freddie Mac and elsewhere. I went into the administration. My very first week on the job I get a call and going to meet in the Western with the president in the Roosevelt room which is right across from The Oval Office.

I’ll get through this quick. I go in, I go into the room. There’s a big long table where obviously the president sits. He has the higher back on his chair. Secretary Geithner who is the treasury secretary, everybody who matters. I look in and there’s couches around the edge of the room and there’s some staff sitting in couches. I start moving towards the couch and Tim Geithner looks at me. He goes, “You’re Stevens, right?” I said, “Yes.” He goes, “You’re sitting at the table.” I go, “What?”

First question is the president Obama walks in, he’s flanked by David Plouffe and Rahm Emanuel and the whole team’s there. I don’t care what you think about the president and this president versus other. I worked for this one. He was brilliant and I thought as all need to be. Anyway, he sits down. He says, “Look, I read all the material. Can someone please explain to me what a warehouse line is?”

This is 2009 when warehouse lines almost dried up for lending. Table goes silent. I’m looking down the table going PhD from Yale, PhD from Harvard. Geithner looks at me he goes, “Stevens, answer the question.” There I am I’m trying to explain what a warehouse line is. I look up and I see the President of the United States looking at me intently. Your real life gets you in different places.

BUFFINI: That’s a great story. It sound like a Jack Ryan story almost right where you’re invited to the security briefing and next thing you know, you’re on a submarine in the middle of the ocean.

STEVENS: We were meeting with the President every couple of weeks because there was a housing crisis. It was a rare experience for a federal housing commissioner to be in that seat.

BUFFINI: Very cool. You did well. Two last questions here. What’s the Dave Stevens jam? You’re in the car by yourself or you’re playing a tune and your kids roll their eyes and go, “Oh, there’s dad playing this whatever.” What’s the music you listen to? What’s the one you get yourself going to?

STEVENS: Rosalita

BUFFINI: Come on.

STEVENS: Bruce Springsteen is one of my favorites. My wife gets so sick of me playing it. There’s a Bruce Springsteen channel on Sirius radio, so I love that. Also, I’m a big singer, songwriter guy. I love James Taylor and Jackson Brown. Those are my go-to guys.

BUFFINI: You’re the all-American kid. That’s all I got to say.

STEVENS: I grew up as a Grateful Dead guy too, so I don’t know if that’s–

BUFFINI: There we go. Last but not least. You’re scrolling the channels. You’ve watched this movie a bunch of times, but every time it’s on you stop. What’s that movie that you always have to stop for?

STEVENS: I have to just pick one or can I pick two?

BUFFINI: Go for it. You got two.

STEVENS: “Godfather II.” I know. Roll your eyes. I get locked into that.


STEVENS: And I’m a lover of the movie, “The Matrix,” the first one.

BUFFINI: Nice. Awesome. That’s great, man. Well, both “The Matrix” and “The Godfather II,” that prepared you beautifully for sitting at the highest reaches of American power by the way. You needed all of that. Well, listen. Look, I appreciate you taking the time. I’ve always just held you in the highest esteem. You got a great– This is going to be so encouraging for so many people today because it’s real. It’s true. The thing is we’re not in 2008, this is a different recession.

STEVENS: There’s good data around everything I’m going through. If this had been a video Zoom, I would have sent slides, but just don’t get wrapped up in the emotion of the naysayers. I’m trying not to be Pollyannish, I’m just looking at what economists are giving me and I think we’re going to have a great housing market ahead. This can be a very rough period we’re going through now. Build a plan for your future and you’ll be better off.

BUFFINI: They are going to restart the race and you got to get the engine raft and then there’s going to be winners and losers and someone’s going to go pass the checkers flag. You’re a winner, Dave, and I appreciate you. I thank you for being with us today and I know our folks are really going to appreciate all your encouragement and good words today. Thanks for being a guest on our show and let’s not make a global pandemic as the next reason we get together again.

STEVENS: I guess that sounds great.

BUFFINI: Well, how positive was that? How assured was that? He’s been on all sides of this. He’s not trying to be Pollyanna, but folks, this too is going to pass. There is going to be winners and losers and that’s why we encourage everyone listening to this, go to buffiniandcompany.com/bcbonus and join us in the rolling start program, the 5 Circle Fit Challenge it’s called, 5 Circle Fit. We want to get your business running.

We want to get your body running. We want to get your mind working. We want to get your finances organized because one of these days, the pace card is going to be removed, the green flag is going to go down, and we’re going to get a chance to get back to work. We’re going to get back to winning and losing. We want you to be a winner. Thanks for joining me today and thanks for tuning into Dave Stevens.

Let me finish with a little Irish blessing for all of you, you heard part of it brought up in the show today. May the roads rise up to meet you. As Dave said, may the wind always be at your back and we got that common with this market. May the rain fall soft upon your fields. That’s a sign of blessing. The sun warm upon your face. Maybe we’ll all get a chance to go outside again. Until we meet again, I hope you do know that God has us all in the hollow of his hand. We’ll see you next time.